One of the biggest issues I see on my couch are people who are dissatisfied with their sex lives. There is a disconnect between what they are having, and what they want. But surprisingly, my clients often have a blurry or incomplete picture of what their ideal sex life would look like.
Many people have had culture/society/parents tell them what they should expect, or what is acceptable, and this just doesn’t work for the individual. We all carry dormant sexual desires that have often been ignored for far too long. Denial of these desires can really mess things up.
I’m sure you can imagine, that as a counselor, I’m a huge fan of self-reflection, especially when it comes to our sex lives. One exercise that I have a lot of my clients go through is setting aside an hour and writing down what their ideal sex life looks like.
Up until now, this writing process has largely been something that I reserved for my private clients. But in today’s writing, I’ll share this powerful tool with you.
This tool is for everybody. Whether you’ve been sexually active for decades and want to explore your sexual process, or you’re relatively inexperienced when it comes to sex and you’re wondering where to begin, then this article will shed some light on your new and exciting path towards sexual freedom and fun.
Before we get into the specifics of what you’ll be thinking/writing about, we’ll start off with some more general questions that will prime your brain for this exercise. I hope you’re as excited as I am about what’s ahead… because OH MAN, your ideal sex life awaits! Let’s get started!
What Do You Like?
So you might be thinking, “I’m already doing what I like sexually. There’s no room for improvement here.” Sure your current sex life may very well be deeply satisfying, I believe that we can always go deeper. If there wasn’t, why would you be reading this? And maybe there are things that you haven’t dared to try that you may like also! So let’s start with this…
1. What have you already liked in your sexual history?
Can you recall the things that first tripped your trigger in the early days of your sexual awakening? Quite often, there were certain sexual acts/trends/dynamics that did a lot for us in the past that have completely fallen to the wayside. If those things fell out of your regular rotation because you’ve outgrown them, they were specific to that partner, or it just didn’t do it for you anymore, that’s fine. But if you loved it then, and there’s no reason that you stopped doing it other than you forgot or just journeyed on, you might want to bring it back into your sex life. You’re allowed to want more of what you still miss. When my clients bring these elements back, they often report “feeling like a teenager again” and it can be invigorating on a mental and energy level!
2. What do you often fantasize about that you haven’t acted on in real life?
OH boy, this one’s a powder keg! Fantasies, like our emotions, often try to point our attention to something that we’re not ready or willing to face just yet. What kinds of thoughts do you have while you day dream or masturbate? Are there thoughts that you find put you into a sexual mood? Even more specifically, what kinds of sexual thoughts do you have in the 5-15 seconds right before you orgasm while you’re masturbating? The thoughts that we use to push ourselves over the edge very often hold keys to what we secretly desire. While I believe that it’s true that not every fantasy needs to be carried out (some fantasies are hotter when they stay in our minds), I’m sure there are a few hot ones that you may want to try introducing into your sex life with a loving, trusted partner. And if you don’t have one of those yet, it helps to start acknowledging that I want to look for a partner I could have this fantasy with.
3. What have you heard about from friends/lovers/media that grabbed your interest but you never tried it out?
Sometimes you don’t even know that something is an option sexually until you hear about it from someone else. I’ve had clients tell me about how they first heard about bondage, anal sex, or costumed role-play when they heard about it from their close friends regarding their relationships. These revelations sparked a sense of wonder and excitement that lit off a fantasy firestorm! So what have you heard about, from any source, in the realm of sexuality that you wouldn’t mind trying out one day? Write it down, do whatever research/prep-work you might need to make it happen, and if you have a trusting, accepting partner, start talking about it! (Again, if you feel your partner would not be open to exploration, contact me here.)
10 Specific Things to Consider While Doing This Exercise
Are you getting excited yet? Want to go even deeper? Want to communicate clearly with your partner? No worries, sweetheart- I’ve got you covered. Start with these ten points, and let your mind roam free from there.
1. Specific sex acts - Let’s start with where most minds go the first- sexual acts. What specific sex acts would you like to be engaging in the most frequently? You on top? You on the bottom? You giving oral sex? You receiving oral sex? You being tied up? You tying someone up? More cuddling and physical affection around your sexual intimacy? Whatever comes to mind, write it down.
2. Frequency - You have a good idea of what you would like to be doing, but how often would you like to be doing each of those acts? Maybe you want to have penetrative, vaginal sex once a week, and you also want to be giving/receiving oral sex two more times per week. Maybe you’d rather be having sex close to every day, and have less physical affection during the day. Whatever it is, you’re allowed to want it. Put it on the list.
3. Duration - Frequency of sexual intimacy is one thing, but what about duration? Maybe you want to have sex three times per week, but you want two of them to be quickies and one of them to be at least three hours of sexual play. Or maybe the opposite is true. Or maybe you need to tell your partner that you need to feel unhurried with oral sex. Time can influence the tone of a sexual encounter to a shocking extent! If it feels true for you, without forcing it, give each sexual act a general, preferred duration.
4. Energy/Tone - We’ve talked about frequency and duration, now let’s talk about the “personality” of the experience! What kind of pacing and overall mood do you want your sex life to have? Do you love being taken against a wall and being part of a passionate quickie? Do you love the lazy, slow rising and falling pace of a four hour sexual play date? Do you prefer hours of foreplay, or a quick, subtle glance across a room to initiate things? This is where I see clients turn into erotic writers! Describe the tone and overall energy in the room for your ideal sex life.
5. Ideal partner/partners - Whether you are single or in a relationship (although understandably this one is more heavily weighted towards the single readers), write briefly about the kind of partner/partners you would want to have to share your sexual intimacy with. Even if you have a current committed partner, this section can help communicate the attitudes you would like them to bring into the bedroom. Are they intuitive? Dominant? Submissive? Highly verbal, or quiet? Strong? Trusting? Open? Physically affectionate before, during, or after sex? Do you initiate the majority of your sexual encounters or do they? How high is their sex drive? How experienced and knowledgeable are they? Describe them in as much detail as you wish.
6. Communicating about sex - How do you and your partner communicate about sex on a day to day or weekly basis? If you aren’t communicating at all, again I say, connect with me here! Do you initiate sex by hinting in a subtle way? Do you have a mutually agreed upon code to signal when you’re up for it? Do you prefer the more direct style of your partner verbally asking you “Do you want to have sex?” However you feel the most comfortable communicating about sex, you are fully within your right to want it that way.
7. Attitude and relationship to sex - What kind of role does sex play in your and your partner’s lives? Is it something that you do every now and then, like scratching an itch? Is it something that you communicate about regularly? Is it one of the most important things in your life? Do you use it as a tool for transformation and spiritual awakening? Is it where you feel the most loved? Whatever role you wish for sex to play in your life, it’s up to you.
8. Contraception & Medication - So far we’ve talked about sex for pleasure, but what about procreation? Do you want children? Does your partner want children? If not, what is your ideal method of birth control for you and/or your partner to use? With pills, patches, shots, condoms, IUD’s and various other methods of keeping the babies at bay as options, this is something worth considering when it comes to what your ideal sex life looks like. Many contraceptive options can help or hinder sexual desire and/or function. And these days, there are so many medications that can impact sexuality, that they should be openly discussed. Beta blockers, hormone treatments, psychiatric medications, and treatments for erectile function can all have huge implications on what happens in the bedroom!
9. Fantasy - Now we’re really going to stretch your comfort zone! Some people want to “live the lifestyle” 24/7, and some just have a “bucket list”. What fantasies do you want to regularly engage in? What fantasies do you want only for special occasions (for instance, anniversaries or birthdays)? Whatever fantasy you want to try at least once, or make a regular part of your routine, if it’s popping up in your mind (or in your masturbatory thoughts) then it should go on the list.
10. Your ‘Maybe list’ - There are a lot of thoughts that might pop up while doing this exercise that you’re not 100% sure that you want to try in real life (or even 5% sure)… and that’s totally fine. Reserve a section on your ideal sex life list for things that you might mayyyyybe want to try one day. Nothing on your list is written in stone, but this last section is the place where you can really let your imagination run wild under the context of “These are the things that I might want to try one day, I think, kind of, with someone that I deeply love/trust a lot. But even then, maybe not. We’ll see.” Write them down- include what attracts you to the idea, and your reservations.
Your Ideal Sex Life Awaits!
I’ve had some clients describe this exercise as feeling like a spoiled rich kid writing out their Christmas wish list (“I want a unicorn with rainbow hair, I want a trampoline to bounce on twice a week for an hour, I want my own slushie machine that only makes cherry cola flavor…”). And that’s totally fine! Be selfish.
This isn’t your ‘Safe and Predictable Sex List’. This is your ideal sex life we’re talking about. So stretch yourself. Push that sexual comfort zone. Now that you have the tools, bust out your journal, your laptop, pen and paper, whatever, and go crazy! Your heart, your lover, and your entire life will thank you.
This isn’t about chasing your strongest orgasm, this is about using sex as a transformative tool that will undo past emotional wounds, reconnect you with your body like you never thought possible, and deepen the connection and intimacy in your intimate relationship. Sex is the ultimate tool for personal transformation, when you do it well. And as always, remember- Good sex is healthy, and healthy is sexy!